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Dental insurance for individuals and families

What does dental insurance cover?

Dental insurance helps cover expenses during a typical year – including routine care such as standard cleanings, exams and x-rays – or more extensive care such as crowns and root canals.

Is dental insurance like health insurance?

Like health insurance, dental insurance will likely include a monthly premium, a deductible and preferred providers.

But dental plans typically use a 100-80-50 model, covering 100% of the cost of routine and preventive services, 80% of basic services such as fillings and pulled teeth and 50% of major services like crowns and implants.

Keep in mind there may be waiting periods for some services. And other services – such as orthodontia and cosmetic dentistry – may not be covered at all.

How much does dental insurance cost?

How much you’ll pay for dental insurance varies depending on several factors, including the insurance provider, the services your plan covers and the state where you live.

Generally, dental premiums range from about $20 a month to $60 a month, with higher premiums when more family members are covered.

Where can I get dental insurance?

Many people get dental insurance through their employer. But it is generally also available through the health insurance marketplace, but only during open enrollment or a special enrollment period, and often only in conjunction with a medical plan.

But don’t worry if you don’t have a qualifying event and you’re shopping outside of open enrollment. You can buy dental plans all year round directly from insurance companies. In most cases, if you’re shopping outside of open enrollment, you’ll need to search for a plan outside the marketplace unless you have a qualifying life event.

How should I choose a dental plan?

aWhen shopping for dental insurance, don’t just look at the monthly premiums. Consider the deductibles, coinsurance and the annual maximum benefit your plan will pay for services you need. You’ll also want to see whether your preferred dentist is in-network with the plans you’re considering.

To learn more, go to healthinsurance.org/dental

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